Amy Ralph Mudge

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Less to the FTC’s Notice of Penalty Offenses Than Meets the Eye?

The FTC’s Notice of Penalty Offenses concerning endorsements and testimonials is barely a week old and it’s likely already had its intended effect. Hundreds, if not more, of consumer products companies are taking a second or third look at their practices when it comes to endorsements and testimonials and are beefing up their training and … Continue Reading

CARU’s Revised Guidelines Are Not Kid-ding Around

By: Amy Mudge, Mike Ingram and Carolina Alonso The Children’s Advertising Review Unit (CARU) recently held their “Kidvertising” workshop to discuss the revised CARU Advertising Guidelines, which are set to take effect on January 1, 2022. The workshop tackled several issues important to child advertising including diversity and inclusion, influencers, and in-app and in-game advertising. … Continue Reading

FTC Puts 700+ Companies on Notice to Expect to Pay Penalties for Any Endorsement Violations

By: Linda Goldstein, Amy Mudge, Randy Shaheen, Jack Ferry and Matt Renick The Federal Trade Commission (FTC or Commission) announced on Oct. 13 a widespread enforcement action against deceptive endorsement practices. The Commission sent a Notice of Penalty Offenses to more than 700 companies, notifying them that conduct related to fake or misleading endorsements and … Continue Reading

Life in Plastic – It’s Fantastic

As the world contends with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, activists are sounding the alarm over another pandemic: the plastic pandemic. Environmentalist groups have been warning Americans about our overconsumption of plastic for years, but now states are taking notice and acting. California and Washington state recently enacted legislation establishing a tiered system designed to increase … Continue Reading

Beware Operation CBDeceit

The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) announced on December 17 that it has taken action against six sellers of CBD products.  In case you need a refresher, CBD is a substance found in the cannabis plant that is widely touted for its health benefits.  The 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp-derived CBD at the federal level, and … Continue Reading

Podcast: AD-ttorneys@law: Consumer Reviews: Paid? Fake? Negative?

Let’s be honest. Customer reviews and testimonials influence buying decisions — an online review can make or break the path to purchase. Amy Ralph Mudge is her authentic self as she outlines the legal framework and counts down an essential list of legal dos and don’ts. Questions & Comments: amudge@bakerlaw.com Listen to the episode. Subscribe to … Continue Reading

Beware of Dark Patterns

Yoda cautioned Luke Skywalker to beware of the Dark Side. In The Golden Compass, we were told to beware of dark materials. For those old enough to remember, the town of Collinsport was told to beware of Barnabas Collins, who lurked in Dark Shadows. And little kids in general are just plain scared of the … Continue Reading

NAD Clarifies Material Connection Disclosure Requirements for TikTok Videos Gone Viral

If you learned a new dance routine, tie-dyed clothing, made whipped coffee or took part in a “challenge” while staying safely at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, you probably have TikTok to thank. TikTok, which has more than 800 million active users, became the go-to social media platform to keep people engaged and entertained while … Continue Reading

FTC Case Against Rent to Own Company Airs Differences Over Redress, Individual Liability and ROSCA

The Rent to Own industry has been a frequent target of Federal Trade Commission (FTC or Commission) action. While the industry notes that it provides an ownership option for consumers who are unable to pay up front and who may not qualify for traditional credit, critics point to the fact that the final cost of … Continue Reading

Commissioner Wilson Weighs In on FTC Priorities

We have blogged quite a bit about efforts by one or both of the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC or Commission) Democratic commissioners to push the Commission into a more enforcement-minded posture and to think creatively and expansively about the enforcement tools the Commission has at its disposal. Thus it seems appropriate to give equal time … Continue Reading

FTC Finally Strikes Gold With Made in USA Enforcement: Williams-Sonoma Agrees To Pay $1 Million in Consumer Redress

In the past few months, a minority of the commissioners have called for the Federal Trade Commission (FTC or Commission) to take the heretofore unprecedented step of seeking consumer redress in Made in USA (MUSA) cases. (In the past such cases only involved money when penalties were imposed for violating an existing order).  In a … Continue Reading

It’s a Mixed Salad for the ‘Natural’ and ‘Pure’ Claims for Foods With Trace Pesticides

Can you call your processed food product “natural” or “pure” when it contains a residual amount of an herbicide or pesticide that the manufacturer did not add but was used by a producer in growing an ingredient in the product? Recent cases confirm that such a product can still be called “natural” – at least … Continue Reading

COVID-19 Update: Consumer Class Action Filed Over Hand Sanitizer Claims

Earlier this week, we blogged about the FTC and FDA’s joint warning letters to seven companies that claimed their products could treat or cure coronavirus. However, the regulators aren’t the only ones taking action over deceptive advertising practices related to coronavirus. A group of California consumers filed a class action complaint alleging Vi-Jon Inc. “advertised, … Continue Reading

Regulators Issue Warning: These Products Cannot Treat Coronavirus

Last week at our #BakerDigitalForum (BakerHostetler’s forum on advertising, e-commerce, data privacy & security law) we heard from Richard Cleland, assistant director, Advertising Practices, for the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. He informed attendees that the FTC’s priorities often come from the headlines, citing COVID-19 as the first example of current events … Continue Reading

The FTC, AI and Algorithms

If you got past the title to this point, congratulations – not sure that we would have. In exchange for your trust, we promise to try to address a complicated and fascinating subject in a relatively clear manner. That’s pretty much what Commissioner Rebecca Slaughter of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) did in a recent … Continue Reading

Are Made in USA Chickens Worthless? These and Other Deep Questions from the FTC’s Made in USA Workshop

Today the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) hosted a half-day workshop looking at Made in USA claims and the FTC’s guidance and enforcement. For those who want to watch “all or substantially all” of the event, the videos and materials can be accessed here. Some highlights and suggested next steps are below. By way of general background, … Continue Reading

Lead Generation Leads to FTC Settlement

There is nothing particularly new about the idea of lead generation in marketing. Companies have from the very beginning paid their own employees or paid others to help find prospects for their goods and services. However, in today’s digital world and with the myriad different ways in which consumer information is gathered, the use of … Continue Reading

FTC MUSA Remedy Wars Continue

We recently wrote about the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC’s) recent approval of a pair of Made in USA (MUSA) settlements. It is also worth noting that the approvals drew a statement and a dissent from the Commission’s Democrats and a concurrence from Chairman Simons. As is often now the case, the dispute made its way … Continue Reading
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